The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

what do i do


By 243rose

Essex, United Kingdom Gb

i saw a dahlia 'dark desire' ar hyde hall gardens in essex and simply had to have one now like a spoilt brat.
i ordered one online which arrived in a 3" pot with the plant about 4 inches tall.
i know it is very late in the dahlia growing season..... what do i do with it, plant it out, keep it in the pot indoors/outdoors. I desperately want it to be okay for next year.

any advice welcome.




Hi 243rose. Yes, it is a bit late I think. If it were mine, I'd put it in the greenhouse or coldframe, protect it from slugs and snails and pot it on. Then when it dies down, dry the tuber off and store it in sand or sawdust in a cool, dry frost-free place until next spring - then plant it and start it off growing in a pot until it's big enough to plant out - and past all frosts. Others may think differently...

4 Sep, 2008


Thanks for that..

if i keep it in the greenhouse i take it that it will grow as large as it can until the cold prevents this, then treat it as if it were ant other dahlia.

Will the fact that it has not grown to full size effect the tuber detrementally ??


4 Sep, 2008


Well it's bound to be smaller, isn't it! So it will take time next year to grow a bit more. I hope you get some flowers next might have to be patient as it sounds VERY small and may have been grown as a cutting! I am a bit concerned about that for you - how can you over-winter a cutting that may not have a tuber??

4 Sep, 2008


Quite. I think I'd just leave it in the pot and repot it if it starts to grow again in the spring. Defo need to protect the little guy from frost....

4 Sep, 2008


it's a cutting and looks a bit weak.
i have only ever grown from tubers before and i don't know what possesed me so late in the season, it was unusual with a chocolate colour flowers with a strange shape almost like some types of clematis.

so, if i leave this cutting to grow.... will it stay in a kind of dormant state and then start growing again in the spring or will it die back and hopefully grow again .

4 Sep, 2008


I reckon you will have to keep it growing, because it will have nothing underneath it to regrow from in the spring, will it? So it will need more heat than normal. I think you have bought yourself a problem, there, Iain!

4 Sep, 2008


might do ok if you keep it indoors in the warm, a window sill maybe

4 Sep, 2008


If you try to keep it going, you might find it still dies off eventually due to the shortening daylight hours that will tell it it's meant to be dormant, but still a good idea I would think...

5 Sep, 2008


thanks for all yr help.
i will keep it in the conservatory until it gets cold then bring it indoors and keep my fingers crossed.
i think as a back up i'll have to try and find somewhere that will sell a tuber just in case.

5 Sep, 2008


Hallo again Iain. You haven't said where in the UK you are, but I have just looked in my RHS Plantfinder book and you will be pleased to know that there are several Nurseries listed in there as stocking 'Dark Desire'. So if you want me to give you details so you can ring them, send me a private message and tell me whereabouts you are. - then I'll find you some local or mail order Nurseries you can ring. Fingers crossed!

5 Sep, 2008


I'd pop it on a warm windowsill overwinter - not forgetting to put it INSIDE the curtains at night, not next to the cold window pane - and let it grow on. It will probably slowdown anyway due to lack of light. Fingers crossed it lasts through to spring !

6 Sep, 2008

How do I say thanks?

Answer question


Not found an answer?